Tough start for NPL sides in FA Cup

By James Gordon

City of Liverpool were the only NPL winners as the FA Cup got underway on Saturday.

Craig Robinson’s side came from a goal down at half time to beat North Counties East side Campion FC 3-1.

John McGrath and Karl Clair scored either side of the hour mark, before Thomas Peterson made sure with nine to play.

That sets them up with a home tie in the preliminary round against Skelmersdale or Penistone Church, who drew 1-1 on Friday night and will replay this week.

The only other survivor from the seven NPL clubs in action in the extra preliminary round were newly promoted Dunston, who held former Northern League foes Consett 1-1.

Mark Fitzpatrick’s goal on the hour cancelled out Luke Carr’s first half opener for Consett, while Fitzpatrick had a potential winner disallowed in the final quarter.

The two sides meet again at Dunston on Tuesday night, with the prize for the winner a home tie against former NPL club Goole, who beat Hall Road Rangers 3-0 at the weekend.

There was heartbreak for Worksop Town on a difficult day, as they conceded two goals in the dying stages to lose 2-1 at home to Melton Town, playing in the FA Cup for the first time in their history.

Later on the Tigers would announce the departure of captain Danny Patterson, who apparently refused to come on as a second half substitute.

Worksop had dominated the first half, taking the lead after just two minutes through Craig Mitchell.

Melton looked like they had forced a replay when Kadeem Price struck in the 90th minute, only for them to snatch a dramatic late winner six minutes in to injury time through Jordan Lever.

They go on to face NPL side Cleethorpes Town in the next round.

A new era for Clitheroe started with defeat, as they were beaten 2-1 at home by 1874 Northwich.

The 2017/18 FA Vase semi-finalists took the lead on six minutes, Matthew Woolley poking home from a free-kick.

Terry Cummings, who scored against 1874 Northwich for Burscough at the same stage last year, equalised just shy of the hour mark but Jake Parker struck a winner 10 minutes later as the Cheshire side continued their encouraging start to the season.

Kendal Town, reprieved from relegation from step four last season, had a miserable start to this campaign as they were handsomely beaten 4-0 at home by Hemsworth Miners Welfare.

Goals from Jason Yates, Luke Danville, Adam Knight and Jordan Davis fired the visitors through.

NPL new boys Ilkeston Town went down to a 3-1 defeat at Loughborough University, conceding two penaties which were both converted by Kelechi Akpobire, either side of a Ronan Silva goal. Alex Marshall’s 65th minute strike proving scant consolation.

And there was defeat to for Carlton Town, who lost out by the odd goal in five at Barton Town.

Reece Moody gave Barton the lead, before an acrobatic effort by Kyle Stovell restored parity.

Ben Hinchliffe put Barton in front before half time, and Moody’s second on 69 minutes proved crucial, as Carlton couldn’t get back in it, despite Tom Maddison’s penalty 15 minutes from time.

Barton will host NPL Premier side Grantham Town in the next round.

Photo courtesy of Ken Fitzpatrick

Where next?

Captain is Hotte for Gainsborough Gainsborough Trinity have appointed Nathan Hotte as their club captain for the 2019/20 season.
Radio Commentaries this afternoon FA Cup Action featuring BetVictor NPL Sides this afternoon

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